Salary Survey Extra: Who gets better IT pay, men or women?
Posted on
February 7, 2019

Salary Survey Extra is a series of periodic dispatches that give added insight into the findings of our most recent Salary Survey. These posts contain previously unpublished Salary Survey data.

Are men and women equal in the eyes of IT employers? One indicator would be to determine who gets better IT pay.

It's been almost 100 years since the Equal Rights Amendment to the United States Constitution was first introduced in Congress. It's been more than 45 years since the Senate and House of Representatives approved the proposed amendment and submitted it to the states for ratification, and roughly 37 years since the final deadline for ratification expired.

On the other hand, there are presently more women in Congress than ever before in history — 106 representatives and 25 senators — and five women have already announced themselves as candidates for the highest office in the land in the coming 2020 presidential election. So maybe the long-dormant vision and spirit of the ERA haven't entirely vanished and been forgotten.

One area where women have rarely been treated as equals with men is in the global workplace, especially when it comes to compensation. Past Salary Surveys have shown, and our newest data confirms, that male workers are, at least monetarily, substantially more valued then their female counterparts. Men get better IT pay than women.

Among the slightly more than 85 percent of U.S. survey respondents who are men, the average annual salary in 2018 was $106,860. For women, who accounted for nearly 15 percent of all U.S. responses, the comparable figure is $96,320. Among certified IT professionals in the United States then, women on average earned roughly 12 percent less than men.

The disparity is even more stark outside the United States, where female certified IT professionals earned, on average, about 25 percent less than men. The 91.2 percent of non-U.S. survey respondents who are men had an average annual salary of $64,160, compared to just $47,090 for women.

We also looked at the gender income gap generationally. Are men and women unequally compensated across the generational spectrum? We divided workers into three groups by age, looking at the young (age 34 and younger), the middle-aged (between the ages of 35 and 54), and the pre-retirement crowd (age 55 and older). Here's what we found:


Age Average Annual Salary (Men) Percentage of all male respondents in this age bracket Average Annual Salary (Women) Percentage of all female respondents in this age bracket
34 and younger $82,210 18.5 percent $74,210 22.1 percent
35 to 54 $110,680 60.9 percent $96,890 49.5 percent
55 and older $117,750 20.6 percent $104,280 28.4 percent

2018 Salary Data

There's unequal pay for men and women across all three generation of workers, and the gap is fairly consistent. Men earn 9.7 percent more on average than women among workers 34 and younger,  12.5 percent more among workers ages 35 to 54, and 11.4 percent more among workers ages 55 and older.


Age Average Annual Salary (Men) Percentage of all male respondents in this age bracket Average Annual Salary (Women) Percentage of all female respondents in this age bracket
34 and younger $41,220 30.5 percent $32,870 56.3 percent
35 to 54 $73,740 64.2 percent $58,890 36.4 percent
55 and older $80,107 5.3 percent $112,730 7.3 percent

2018 Salary Data

Outside the United States, earnings for women are actually outpacing those of men at the end of the career timeline. Men are doing better during the early and middle years. Also of note here is that a much higher percentage of female respondents are in the youngest generation than is the case among men. Both inside the United States and around the globe, male tech workers are heavily concentrated in that middle generation, between the ages of 35 and 54.

About the Author

Certification Magazine was launched in 1999 and remained in print until mid-2008. Publication was restarted on a quarterly basis in February 2014. Subscribe to CertMag here.

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